DANBURY, Conn. — To put a spotlight on the often hidden issue of domestic and sexual violence, Western Connecticut State University in Danbury hosted a number of events, including "Take Back the Night" with speakers and a candlelight ceremony.
The goal of the event, held by the Women's Center of Greater Danbury and the Delta Gamma Phi sorority, was to raise awareness while helping victims cope and move forward with their lives.
Experts said the victims of domestic and sexual violence are often too embarrassed or ashamed to share their stories or to report them to police. These crimes are often found on college campuses, which is why the event organizers were working to raise awareness.
At the beginning of the week, WestConn hosted Operation Jungle Red on the quad on the Midtown Campus. There, students can paint one fingernail red to represent awareness and sign a pledge to end violence and to help protect others.
The Take Back the Night event featured student speakers along with advice from the Danbury Police Department and the Women's Center.
One student told a story of how an intimate picture of herself went viral and how she was "locked away from herself for so long" because of the trauma of the incident.
She said she didn't know what to do or how to move on with her life. Her aspirations were in political science and writing, and through those skills she was able to recover.
"He locked me in a cage, but he forgot to lock my voice," she says.
After the speakers, there was a march around the quad to speak up against the violence of domestic and sexual abuse.
"This was a very good turnout tonight. There was a lot of energy," said Dill Daddona, a campus advocate from the Women's Center. "It was good to see everyone's support."
For more information on domestic and sexual violence, visit the website of Women's Center at WestConn by clicking here.
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.